Ann Coulter, go away

Ann Coulter is a vile, disgusting creature. She would never be welcome in my home.

I wouldn't be very happy about her being in a neighbor's home, either. If the day she was there turned out to be the start of a 21st century Kristallnacht, my window might end up being one of the ones that got smashed.

Following that logic, she shouldn't be welcome in my country, either. It says elsewhere on this site that journalist Amy Goodman was told by the Canadian Border Services Agency that she could be in Canada for only 48 hours, because they were concerned that she might criticize the Olympics while she was here. That's pretty tame compared to Coulter's rave that we Canadians "are lucky we allow them to exist on the same continent."

Two wrongs don't make a right, of course. The treatment of Goodman by CBSA was just plain wrong, and an embarrassment to Canada. When the subject of free speech comes up, the words "slippery slope" usually come with it. But let's look at it this way: If a statement like "Invade their countries, kill all their leaders, and convert them to Christianity" can be protected by freedom of speech, then it's also acceptable for any University of Ottawa student who chooses to do so to punch Coulter in the nose.

The controversy over Coulter has provided some free publicity to another vile and disgusting creature, Ezra Levant. About ten years ago, when I was the President of Airspace Action on Smoking and Health, I wrote an article for the newsletter identifying Levant as an agent of the tobacco industry. A month later, I got an email from Levant. Levant apparently Googles himself on a regular basis. He found my article, didn't like being identified as an agent of the tobacco industry, and threatened me with legal action.

I would have loved to hear Levant present arguments to try to convince a judge that he isn't a tobacco industry agent. However, I was out-voted on this by the Directors of Airspace, who felt that getting tied up in court with Levant would not have been a good use of our limited resources. So, I simply removed the mention of Levant from the article.

A few years later, Levant wrote a book, The War on Fun. Here's the titles of chapters four, five, and seven: "The Original Health Nazi", "Today's Health Nazis", and "Who are the Anti-Smokers?" Chapter seven identifies the "anti-smokers" as Physicians for a Smoke-Free Canada, Action on Smoking and Health, and the Non-Smokers Rights Association.

So, is Levant an agent of the tobacco industry? I think so, because he uses their code words and talking points, but hey, that's just my opinion. Since Levant is now on record as saying that free speech protects someone who said "we just want Jews to be perfected", he can't possibly have any problem with my opinion on Levant's relationship with the tobacco industry. Suck on it, Ezra.

Update on March 27

It turns out that Levant lied when he blamed the University of Ottawa for shutting down Coulter's appearance. The decision to cancel the event was made by Coulter's people, not the University of Ottawa or the police.

It also turns out that Levant is, indeed, an agent of the tobacco industry. He has been a registered lobbyist for Rothmans, Inc. (actually Philip Morris International) since June 12, 2009. You can look it up yourself by clicking here.


0 #1 Sera 2010-03-28 06:41
Well done, Bob.

Coulter's cancellation seems obviously pre-planned. Too lazy to do the job she was paid to do? Unable to take what she dishes out? Incandescent huff because Canadians allow the same freedom of speech to protesters that she wants only for herself? Worried that what she advocates for Muslims and Canadians might be applied to her by peaceful protesters? Probably all of the above. Reminds me of the "Brave Sir Robin" song from "Monty Python and the Holy Grail".

When protest reared its peaceful head
She bravely turned her tail and fled
Annie Coulter turned about
And gallantly she chickened out

Looks like a cowardly hypocrite to me. Trash with cash.

As for whining about a letter warning someone who has an extensive record of hate speech and incitement in countries where this is legal, there is nothing unreasonable about reminding such a person, when inexplicably allowing her to be a guest in our country, that our laws are different. My guess is that the U of O did this to protect themselves from the criminal charges they could have faced had they failed to warn her, which seems perfectly reasonable to me. Pretty thin-skinned of Coulter, who strongly advocates mass murder and violent religious oppression to get her knickers in a twist over a simple reminder about a Canadian law she routinely breaks outside of Canada.

Given that others have been denied entry into Canada for a history of expressing comparatively benign views, she should be grateful she was allowed in at all. So get off the cross, Annie. Grow up and take some personal responsibility for your actions. Just because you opened your ugly red gash and vomited doesn't mean everyone has to eagerly lap it up with floppy-eared canine reverence and defend your incitement to hatred, murder, oppression of free speech for those who disagree with you, and genocide as identical to "being fair to hearing all points of view."

As for suing the Canadian government for your “human rights violations,” why not save your cash to sue your team of appearance consultants who made you look, in my humble opinion, like a constipated, inbred scarecrow in drag and gave you lips like a torn pocket? You look to me like something that would eat its young.

As for Levant, I took a look the Wikipedia page. INTERESTINGLY, there is no mention of his work as a tobacco lobbyist. Was this an oversight? Or, as his erstwhile threat of a lawsuit in response to allegations that the truth about him is actually the truth implies, is he ashamed of his involvement? Mr. Levant, here's some advice for free: if your relationship needs to be a secret, then you probably should not be in it. If you are ashamed of your association with Rothman's, resign. If you are simply worried about what people will think of you, learn to live with it. You are already on record as proudly defending Nazis and hatred. Do you really believe that letting people know you also act as a representative (or, as some people might put it, whore) for the tobacco industry is going to destroy your reputation? After all, you wouldn't want to censor people or oppress free speech. And as a lawyer, you already know that if it's true, it isn't slander or libel.

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